What is the best way of characterizing the analytic/continental distinction?
Writing is an attempt by the author to express their thoughts on paper as purely as they are expressed in the mind, and minds express these thoughts in a multitude of different ways. In this essay, I will discuss the analytic/continental divide, arguing that the best way to characterize the distinction is through the differences each tradition has in terms of literary style.
Before getting into the heart of the essay, I will briefly explain some characteristics of the analytic and continental tradition, particularly corresponding methodology. I will then begin, establishing two established ways of characterizing the divide, the first being the geographic distinction, the second being clarity. I will indicate the imperfections in these methods, and will present my own way of characterizing the divide that addresses these flaws, the way being through literary style. I will discuss two definable and recognizable terms of said literary style, and discuss the terms applied to each tradition, as well as the differences therein.
As there is an abundance of ways to characterize this divide, I can only focus on those most significant to my purposes. Nevertheless, through flaws of others, I will build the literary style distinction, and aim to prove it as the best and most useful means of making the distinction clear and characterizable.
1. Analytic/Continental Background
What needs to be done in this section, is the methodology of each needs to be explained.
The Continental tradition finds its origins in the works of Kant, and was firmly established through the writings of Hegel. Among its fundamental principles include a desire to find and answer philosophical questions unapproachable within a scientific framework, and possibly most notably a lack of concern as to the fluidity and ease-of-comprehension of the writing. In his Logic, Hegel wrote,
“...to want the nature of cognition clarified prior to the science is to demand that it be considered outside the science; outside the science this cannot be accomplished, at least not in a scientific manner and such a manner is alone here in place [44 words]” (Logic, pg 173).
The sentiment expressed of cognition extends to time, and the whole of metaphysics, and has remained near the heart of continental philosophy. Heidegger expressed a similar sentiment on being, and what this sentiment essenti